The MUSE

Wallace Baine is the arts/culture editor and Sunday columnist for the Santa Cruz Sentinel, the daily newspaper in ravishing Santa Cruz, Calif. where the burritos are tasty, the beaches are spacious and everyone is eccentric, at least a little bit.

My misbegotten attempt at replacing the late great Dear Abby

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 26, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

By WALLACE BAINE We here in the newspaper business are all wearing black armbands in memory of Dear Abby, who along with her identical twin sister Ann Landers, formed a kind of two-headed Platonic ideal of the advice columnist. You could make the case that each of them sold more newspapers than any other single … Continue reading »

Tristan Prettyman: San Diego singer/songwriter delivers personal ballads on ‘Cedar and Gold’

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 22, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

By Bonnie Horgos When faced with a crumbling wedding engagement to singer/songwriter Jason Mraz, Tristan Prettyman faced her heartache the only way she could: songwriting. “I got engaged and I was super happy, and as cliche as it sounds, it really didn’t help my writing,” Prettyman said. “Then I got unengaged and I couldn’t stop … Continue reading »

Are we surrounded by psychopaths?

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 18, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

By WALLACE BAINE There was a time in the ancient past when I was certain I’d be wealthy one day. Well, that one day has arrived and I now possess just as many Italian villas and NFL franchises as I did back then – here’s a hint: I’m thinking of a whole number less than … Continue reading »

Body vs. Time

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 18, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

‘Your Body is Not a Shark’ is an exciting new dance/poetry collaboration which grapples with the inevitable decline of the body {THURSDAY THROUGH SUNDAY. Jan. 17-20. 8 p.m. Motion at the Mill, 131 Front St., Santa Cruz. Tickets are $16 and $20 in advance; $18/$22 at the door. Only 75 seats per night available. Details: … Continue reading »

coolpicks: GAIL RICH AWARDS

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 15, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

NEXT WEEK GAIL RICH AWARDS Call it Santa Cruz’s version of the Lincoln Center Awards. From the among the vast numbers of artists, performers and writers making their home in Santa Cruz, six individuals are chosen for their contributions to the local cultural scene, and the whole community comes out to appreciate their artistic … Continue reading »

CoolPix: MURIEL ANDERSON & TIERRA NEGRA

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 15, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

MONDAY MURIEL ANDERSON & TIERRA NEGRA Those who’ve heard her play don’t be need to be convinced that Muriel Anderson is one of the finest acoustic guitarists on two feet. But even Anderson’s most devoted fans have to be intrigued with this new direction in her career as she teams up with the celebrated … Continue reading »

CoolPix: DAVINA & THE VAGABONDS

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 15, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

FRIDAY DAVINA & THE VAGABONDS Twin Cities-based R&B band Davina & the Vagabonds comes into town with a reputation for sparkling and muscular rockin’ blues with a charismatic front woman named Davina Sowers who occupies that territory somewhere between Bonnie Raitt and Amy Winehouse, complete with a horn section and plenty of room at the … Continue reading »

Movie Review: ‘Rust and Bone’

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 13, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

By Lisa Kennedy Denver Post Film Critic How audacious is  French director Jacques Audiard’s “Rust and Bone”? Well, at one point, it seems the romantic drama starring Marion Cotillard and Matthias Schoenaerts could not get any more laden with melodramatic disaster. “Rust and Bone” starts out with an improbable tragedy. Orca whale trainer Stéphanie has an … Continue reading »

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 12, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

Rushad Eggleston Hailing from Big Sur, Rushad Eggleston is known for inventing the bluegrass cello, which combines finger-picking goodness with a well loved timbre. Lily Henly will also perform with her backing band, adding her own fiddle playing to an already sumptuously stringed night. When: 7 p.m. Where: Don Quixote’s International Hall of Music, … Continue reading »

The Guide

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 12, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

feature story Body Language spotlight Christa Martin: Stacie Willoughby and the art of the poster coolpicks Gail Rich Awards Davina & The Vagabonds Muriel Anderson & Tierra Negra writtenword Tracy Kidder art sudio Kirby Scudder: PVAC shows “Sleight of Hand” in new exhibit theater San Francisco’s ‘Anything Goes’ a rollicking journey scfilm ‘Where heaven meets hell’ … Continue reading »

Literary program gives young writers a chance to publish

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 9, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

By WALLACE BAINE Writers don’t just drop out of trees fully formed. They have to be cultivated and they have to grow and ripen at their own pace. If applying words to paper – or its computerized equivalent – is to survive as an artform in a streaming-video world, then someone, to extend our metaphor, … Continue reading »

Fatheads rejoice! New book chronicles the wild times of cult radio station KFAT

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 9, 2013 ⋅ 1 COMMENT

By Mary McCaslin Back in the 1970s, Jim Ringer and I lived in southern California. A friend visiting from the Bay Area mentioned that we were getting played on a radio station called KFAT in Gilroy. We had never heard of KFAT, but were thrilled to be included on the playlist of any radio station. …Continue reading »

Tarantino, Disney and the elephant in the room

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 8, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

What I did last week was, you might say, the cinematic equivalent of what the Scandinavians supposedly love to do – sit in a sauna until their thighs are boiled hams and their eyeballs are poached eggs, and then go dive naked into a snowbank. It was like throwing back a big old glass of … Continue reading »

‘Follow Me Down’ goes into the Louisiana prison system to learn something about music’s effect on pain and struggle

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 7, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

By WALLACE BAINE From the work songs, field hollers and Negro spirituals of the antebellum South to the many folk songs that emerged from prisons in the early 20th century, American music has often been deeply rooted in a denial of freedom. From the African music of American slaves grew blues and gospel and its … Continue reading »

2013 Gail Rich Award Winners

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 5, 2013 ⋅ 2 COMMENTS

Santa Cruz County is that place where the guy behind the café counter is a singer/songwriter, the woman showing you a house for sale is a landscape painter and your next-door neighbor is writing her third novel. Creativity isn’t some indulgence for the idle elite; it’s a common language among neighbors. It’s why many of … Continue reading »

The myth of the ‘slippery slope’

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 4, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

By Wallace Baine Since we’re now in ski season, I suppose it makes sense that we take a minute to celebrate this thing called a “slippery slope.” With apologies to the masochists known as cross-country skiers, skiing wouldn’t be much fun without some kind of slope, slippery or otherwise. So, as a literal thing in … Continue reading »

Author Jaimal Yogis explores the neuro-scientific roots of fear by facing his own

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 4, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

Though he doesn’t look like it at first glance, journalist Jamail Yogis possesses a reptile brain. In that respect, he’s no different than the rest of us seven billion or so homo sapiens currently living on earth – not to mention the billions of other mammals and, of course, reptiles sharing the planet. And in … Continue reading »

Legendary jazz vocalist Dee Dee Bridgewater leads a superstar band in bringing the unique Monterey Jazz Festival vibe to the rest of the country

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 4, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

The last concert at the 2012 Monterey Jazz Festival featuring, as usual in the granddaddy of all jazz festivals, an astounding band. The great jazz singer Dee Dee Bridgewater , who first appeared at Monterey 40 years ago, lead a group that featured bassist Christian McBride, pianist Benny Green, drummer Lewis Nash, saxophonist Chris Potter … Continue reading »

Artist Futzie Nutzle displays career retrospective at Blitzer

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 3, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

Those who’ve been around the Santa Cruz cultural scene for a while will recognize the unique name of Futzie Nutzle, who first gained widespread acclaim for his pointed but hilarious line drawing cartoons in several local newspapers, as well as Rolling Stone magazine. Since those days as a cartoonist, Nutzle has been engaged in a … Continue reading »

After 18 years, Santa Cruz’s 10-minute play festival ’8 Tens @ Eight’ still has lots to draw from

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 3, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

Of all the events that festoon the Santa Cruz County cultural calendar, the annual “8 Tens @ Eight” Festival is inarguably the first and probably the most varied and diverse. For 18 years, the Festival has welcomed 10-minute play submissions from all over the country and produced them in a month-long smorgasbord of comedy, drama … Continue reading »

Futzie Nutzle

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 1, 2013 ⋅ 2 COMMENTS

For the record, no, his birth certificate does not carry the name “Futzie Nutzle.” That’s the nom de plume that Bruce Kleinsmith adopted back in the 1960s to attach to his wry, paradoxical and often subversive line-drawing cartoons that, for many years, seduced Santa Cruz newspaper readers into grappling with amusing philosophical puzzles. Even then, … Continue reading »

Skip Epperson

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 1, 2013 ⋅ 5 COMMENTS

As a visual artists go, Skip Epperson must be the envy of many. After all, people typically encounter his work by sitting in a comfortable seat and gazing at it for an hour or two. Skip’s art is theater set design and few would argue with calling him Santa Cruz County’s finest in that field. … Continue reading »

Linda Burman-Hall

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 1, 2013 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

This year marks the end of the fourth decade for the Santa Cruz Baroque Festival, the brainchild of founder, artistic director and harpsichordist Linda Burman-Hall. The festival, a series of five concerts annually, is not only focused on performing music from the Baroque period – think J.S. Bach and Handel’s “Messiah” – but in recreating … Continue reading »

Tammi Brown

POSTED BY  ⋅ JANUARY 1, 2013 ⋅ 1 COMMENT

For the past five years, R&B singer Tammi Brown has had trouble saying “no” to anyone who has asked her to sing. She has regularly performed in several ensemble shows in Santa Cruz from “Planet Cruz Comedy Hour” to “An Altared Christmas” to the White Album Ensemble. She continues to sing on various recordings for … Continue reading »

The Joe Sharino tradition in Santa Cruz jumps into the next generation with the Alison Sharino band

POSTED BY  ⋅ DECEMBER 29, 2012 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

By Wallace baine When Joe Sharino first began his annual “New Year’s Eve Eve” show in Santa Cruz, he was the dad of a baby girl just past her first birthday, far too young to dance to “Heard It Through the Grapevine.” In 2013, that baby girl will turn 30 — in fact, she now … Continue reading »

Santa Cruz-born twin brothers Pascal and Remy Le Boeuf still following musical passions

POSTED BY  ⋅ DECEMBER 28, 2012 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

There are but two Le Boeuf brothers, but judging by their various musical activities, you might think there are four of them. Remy and Pascal Le Boeuf are known in local musical circles as the young lions of Santa Cruz jazz, the identical twin brothers whose musical ambitions are as large as their talents. At … Continue reading »

Damas y caballeros, let’s hear it for El Vez

POSTED BY  ⋅ DECEMBER 18, 2012 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

Maybe one day – in this demographically evolving world we keep hearing about when Latinos will become a more influential bloc of voters and consumers – Robert Lopez will become every bit as big as Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta. If you don’t recognize that latter name, it’s the birth name of the musical supernova known … Continue reading »

‘Chasing Mavericks’ puts Santa Cruz on Hollywood’s radar

POSTED BY  ⋅ DECEMBER 15, 2012 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

EDITOR’S NOTE: During the final two weeks of 2012, the Sentinel is taking a look back at the most newsworthy stories and newsmakers of the year. The series will be published in ascending order, ending on Dec. 31 with the story selected by the Sentinel staff as the year’s biggest. SANTA CRUZ — Richard “Frosty” … Continue reading »

Dreaming of a NorCal Christmas? The Mermen surf-rock the holiday

POSTED BY  ⋅ DECEMBER 14, 2012 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

FRIDAY 9 p.m. Moe’s Alley, 1535 Commercial Way, Santa Cruz. $12 advance; $15 at the door. Benefit for the Santa Cruz chapter of the Surfrider Foundation. Details: http://www.moesalley.com orhttp://www.mermen.net By WALLACE BAINE What do we hear when we hear the sounds of Christmas? Is it sleigh bells, swelling strings and angelic choral voices? Or … Continue reading »

The Marx Brothers meet Christmas ballet in Cabrillo Stage’s zany holiday comedy ‘A Night at the Nutcracker’

POSTED BY  ⋅ DECEMBER 12, 2012 ⋅ LEAVE A COMMENT

Christmas concerts are everywhere. Holiday TV specials all over the place. But plays that riff on the season? Not so much. There’s “A Christmas Carol” (and it’s musical version “Scrooge”). There’s “Miracle on 34th Street.” And then there’s … Meet the newest entry into the Christmas theatrical canon. “A Night at the Nutcracker,” written by … Continue reading »

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